Home' Scoop : Scoop 54 Summer 2010 Contents 36 SCOOP SUMMER 2010
FORUM state of play
IN MID 2010, $31 MILLION OF STATE MONEY WAS FREED UP THROUGH A RESTRUCTURE OF TOURISM WA.
WE ASK FOUR PROMINENT WEST AUSTRALIANS: HOW WOULD YOU SPEND THE CASH ON OUR STATE?
Kathryn Cizeika, founder, Empire Rose
“A stimulus package focused on training
and development to increase the skills
and depth of the manufacturing industry
in WA. Two incentives: one for designers
to produce garments locally, the other to
promote the trades as viable, attractive
career paths to young Australians.”
IT’S NOT TOO LATE TO HELP OUR
OLYMPIANS GET BACK ON THE WATER
AND IN THE RACE. TO PLEDGE YOUR
SUPPORT IN THEIR BID, EMAIL ROBERT@
ocal sailors Tessa Parkinson and Elise Rechichi have won four world
championships. T hey were named Young Team of the Year at the
Australian Sport Awards in 2005, and were the WA Athletes of the
Year in 2007/08 after their stunning gold medal performance in the
470 class at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Tessa and Elise are the best of
the best, and they are an inspiration to all young athletes. It’s a shame they are
no longer able to compete at an international level.
After six years of intense competition and travel, the girls cannot afford
to continue. Self-funded for most of their careers, they have been forced to
cancel plans to defend their Olympic title in London in 2012. Tessa admits
the decision cuts deep. “At this stage, we simply can’t go ahead. We pushed
hard and tried to make it work, but we had to make a tough call a few months
ag o.” Without private sponsorship, their dream is over.
Now, before you start feeling sorry for Tessa and Elise, you should know
things are not as bad as they seem... they are a lot worse. In December 2011,
the ISAF World Championships will come to WA. The competition, the most
prestigious event on the sailing calendar, will take place off the coast of Freo.
Possessing a home-ground advantage, Tessa and Elise would be strong
contenders for a fifth world title. Unfortunately, they cannot afford to compete.
Ironically, Tessa is now working for the Perth 2011 committee, and
she and Elise are ambassadors for the event. Tessa remains remarkably
unembittered by the situation. “There is not much funding in Australia for
sailing, and less again in Western Australia. Sailors in other countries are
full-time professionals. We just don’t have that luxury.”
Tessa and Elise are now setting their sights on the 2016 Olympics in
Brazil. They are young and talented and desperate to continue their dream.
With careful planning, they should be able to scrape together necessary funds
to realise their ambition. In the meantime, Tessa is looking forward to the
upcoming world championships, which she describes as “a real boost for
sailing in Western Australia.” She’ll enjoy it from the sidelines.
Her positive attitude is remarkable, yet she admits to feeling frustrated.
“You’d like to think it was your skills, rather than the system, letting you down.
I’m sure we will be able to compete at the top level in Brazil in 2016, but
missing out in London is pretty hard to accept.” It is something all West
Australians find hard to accept.
We’re aghast that our world-
leading sailors can’t compete at
the next world championships...
being held in their hometown
John Worsfold, coach,
West Coast Eagles
“The MCG has a fantastic interactive
sports museum dedicated to Aussie
Rules football. I’d love to set up
something similar at Patersons
Stadium (Subiaco Oval). Let’s show off
the rich history of AFL in WA.”
The Most Reverend
Archbishop of Perth
“Celebrate with panache our
cultural diversity – create spaces
for conversation that educate and
enhance the sacred nature of life and
this amazing place we call home.”
Eric Ripper, State Opposition leader
“The Government has created an events
graveyard in the State, so I would look at
holding a major event that would put WA
on the map. WA needs its own event that
would generate international attention
and, let’s be frank, a fair amount of
interstate envy as well!”
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